Fatal Accident on Fuel Barge in NYC Harbor Prompts Safety Reminder
A fatal accident is serving as a reminder of the dangers when performing seemingly routine tasks. Reports are indicating that a 53-year-old crewmember working for Centerline, a tug and barge operator that provides fueling services and transports petroleum between refineries and terminals, was killed early Thursday morning. The company terms the circumstances of the accident as a reminder to raise situational awareness around everyday tasks.
The crewmember with more than 20 years experience was at the company’s dock on the Kill Van Kull Channel near Staten Island, New York reportedly offloading trash around 6:00 am while it was still dark outside when he misjudged distances between two barges. He fell between the barges. Other crew at the scene tried to recover the individual and also called for New York City’s rescue teams.
The New York Fire and Police departments both responded to the scene and news helicopters were on site. Reports indicate that the man was recovered from the channel and rushed to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Centerline responded to the tragedy, informing its crews, and ordering an immediate safety review to highlight routine tasks and unforeseen hazards. Captains were instructed to conduct a safety meeting within 24 hours with their crews and record the meeting in the logs. They were instructed to conduct a discussion on everyday tasks and how to remain vigilant, reducing complacency and increasing safety.